Sunday, November 25, 2007

Karl Ohs, RIP

This release was sent to us:

Karl Ohs, 61, of Harrison, passed away with his wife, Sherri, and family by his side at approximately 9:30am this morning at his home in Helena.

Karl had been fighting brain cancer after being diagnosed in March of this year.

Karl served as Montana’s Lieutenant Governor from 2000-2004. He also served in the Montana Legislature, and is most widely recognized for his actions which ended the 1996 Freeman Standoff in Jordan, Montana.

Funeral arrangements and services are pending.

We can hardly do better than to reprise this segment (written back in June at the time of the GOP state convention) from a Charles Johnson piece that touched on the former Lt. Gov.:

As with most political conventions, every speaker this weekend was greeted with loud applause. But the warmest applause came when outgoing GOP chairman Karl Ohs was introduced.

Ohs, a former lieutenant governor, had surgery this spring to remove a brain tumor and is undergoing chemotherapy. He did not seek the party post again.

Standing with his wife, Sherri, Ohs told the crowd, "We're all right today. We have a few challenges ahead. With your support, we'll be just fine."

Politics in Montana, like elsewhere, suffers from more than its share of poseurs, fakers, sharks and snakes. Karl Ohs isn't among them. This Montana cowboy is a thoroughly decent and kind man.

Ohs also is an authentic American hero. At the FBI's request in 1996, Ohs made 19 trips riding his horse into the armed compound occupied by the anti-government Freemen in Garfield County. Ohs played a critical role in negotiating a peaceful settlement that helped prevent the bloodshed of Waco or Ruby Ridge. The FBI later honored Ohs with its top award to civilians.

Montanans of all political stripes are wishing Ohs the best.